December 14th Leadership Louisville Virtual Luncheon featuring Arthur Brooks & panel of U.S. Mayors

“FORWARD TOGETHER: Gaining Strength from our Differences” is theme of the 2020 Leadership Louisville Virtual Luncheon on December 14 – featuring Harvard professor and author Arthur C. Brooks and U.S. Mayors from Austin, Miami & New Orleans

The annual Leadership Louisville Luncheon, presented by LG&E and KU Foundation, is known for bringing in dynamic and notable mayors from prominent U.S. cities and is one of the largest gatherings of the region’s most influential leaders in business, government, nonprofits and civic engagement. The December 14, 2020, virtual experience will take advantage of the virtual format to feature several national thought leaders at a time when our city and nation need to work to bridge divides and make progress together. It will feature a panel conversation with guest Mayors Steve Adler of Austin, TX; LaToya Cantrell of New Orleans, LA; Francis Suarez of Miami, FL; following keynote speaker Arthur C. Brooks, Harvard professor and national bestselling author of Love Your Enemies: How Decent People Can Save America From a Culture of Contempt. Registration is now open for the event held in partnership with the Leadership Louisville Center and the Office of the Mayor. The event will remain one of the Leadership Louisville Center’s major fundraisers of the year and a portion of proceeds will be directed towards diversity scholarship funds to allow more leaders to participate in the Center’s programming.

Attendees may register at Individual tickets are $75, City Champion sponsorships for up to 25 participants are $1,500. Additional sponsorship opportunities are also available by contacting Jennifer Stevens, If the ticket price is a barrier for attendees, alternative pricing options are available on the website. The 2020 Leadership Louisville Virtual Luncheon will be held December 14, 2020 from 9:00 – 10:30 a.m., with opportunity to participate in facilitated conversations from 12-1 p.m. For more information, visit or call (502) 561-0458.

LG&E and KU Foundation generously supports the Leadership Louisville Luncheon as the event’s presenting sponsor. Special thanks to our additional supporters –

Platinum sponsor: Papa John’s International

Gold sponsors: Brown-Forman Corporation and Louisville Public Media;

Silver sponsors: Anthem BlueCross BlueShield; Doe-Anderson; Farm Credit Mid-America; Fifth Third Bank; Louisville Business First; and Tandem Public Relations.

Bronze sponsors: Baptist Health; D.D. Williamson; Frost Brown Todd LLC; Humana, Inc.; The Lane Report; MPI Printing; Northwestern Mutual; PNC Bank; and WAVE 3 News.


Panel of U.S. Mayors to include: Mayor Steve Adler, Austin, TX; Mayor LaToya Cantrell, New Orleans, LA; Mayor Greg Fischer, Louisville, KY; and Mayor Francis Suarez, Miami, FL.


Event will feature a panel conversation with guest mayors from both sides of the political aisle who represent diverse perspectives and hold leadership roles not only in their city but on the national stage through the U.S. Conference of Mayors. The conversation will follow the keynote presentation with Arthur C. Brooks and will include conversation on actions we can take to build more vibrant, just, and united communities. Guest Mayors include (click links to learn more):

Honorable Steve Adler, Mayor of Austin, TX

Honorable LaToya Cantrell, Mayor of New Orleans, LA

Honorable Francis Suarez, Mayor of Miami, FL



Harvard professor, Bestselling Author, and The Atlantic Columnist

Arthur C. Brooks is the New York Times Bestselling Author of Love Your Enemies: How Decent People Can Save America From a Culture of Contempt.  Brooks offers a better way to lead based on bridging divides and mending relationships. He blends cutting-edge behavioral research, ancient wisdom, and a decade of experience leading one of America’s top policy think tanks. His prescriptions are unconventional. He says to bring communities together, we shouldn’t try to agree more. There’s no need for mushy moderation because disagreement is the secret to excellence. Civility and tolerance shouldn’t be our goals, because they are hopelessly low standards. And our feelings toward our perceived foes are irrelevant; what matters is how we choose to act.

Brooks offers a clear strategy for victory for a new generation of leaders. It is a rallying cry for people hoping for a new era of American progress. Most of all, it is a roadmap to arrive at the happiness that comes when we choose to love one another, despite our differences.

Arthur C. Brooks is Professor of the Practice of Public Leadership at the Harvard Kennedy School and a Fellow at the Harvard Business School. He served for ten years as president of the Washington, D.C.-based American Enterprise Institute (AEI), one of the world’s leading think tanks. Brooks is the author of 11 books, is a columnist for The Atlantic, host of the podcast “The Art of Happiness with Arthur Brooks,” and subject of the documentary film “The Pursuit,” which Variety named as one of the “Best Documentaries on Netflix” in August 2019.


About the Leadership Louisville Luncheon:

Presented by the Leadership Louisville Center in partnership with the Office of the Mayor, the Leadership Louisville Luncheon has gathered influential leaders from across the region since 1988. Special guest speakers have included top mayors in the country to share insights on community development initiatives of interest to the Louisville community. Past events have been attended by over 1,000 community leaders representing over 300 companies.

The 2020 Leadership Louisville Luncheon will differ from years past. First, this annual gathering of the community’s most engaged leaders will be a virtual experience. An online platform will allow the Center to elevate the event and bring in voices from multiple nationally prominent thought leaders and feature more personal dialogue. Secondly, the event will remain one of the Center’s major fundraisers of the year but will direct proceeds to diversity scholarship funds to allow more leaders to participate in leadership development programming, as well as offer opportunities to attend for those who find the ticket price a barrier.

One thing remains the same – this is a must-attend gathering for those dedicated to positive change. This annual event has helped Louisville and the visiting mayor’s cities gain momentum for their respective priorities and allowed business and community leaders to better engage in civic initiatives. Recent guest mayors featured at the Leadership Louisville Luncheon include Sylvester Turner, Houston, TX; Pete Buttigieg, South Bend, IN; Mitch Landrieu, New Orleans, LA; Karl Dean, Nashville, TN; Stephanie Rawlings-Blake, Baltimore, MD; and Mick Cornett, Oklahoma City, OK.



The Leadership Louisville Center is the region’s most valuable resource for leadership development and civic engagement. With a purpose to inspire and equip leaders to be better and do better, it has graduated over 10,000 through its civic programs since 1979. The Center is recognized as a national best practice and is known for its dynamic programming and strong community connections. Programming includes five social impact leadership programs (Leadership Louisville, Focus Louisville, Ignite Louisville, Bingham Fellows and Encore Louisville), leadership skills training courses presented through the Leadership Green Room, and events designed to connect leaders and motivate positive change. Learn more at

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